So as I prepare to leave, a new volunteer named Lindell or Lindy for short, coming to work in Cedar Valley. She’s in the Environmental Program and will be working a few days each week with the school and a few days each week with various farmers’ groups. She’s pretty awesome!! So as fate would have it, Lindy is from Indy!! It’s really a strange and wonderful thing to meet a fellow Indy girl all the way down here in Jamaica. Something I’ve realized about the states is that you definitely have regional cultures (if not state or city or part of a city culture) and it’s great to have someone from home. We’ve talked about all our favorite things like Mass Ave and Bakersfield tacos and margs, and Bru Burger and Scotty’s and 3 Wisemen and Broadripple and Downtown and all the parts of Indianapolis and Indiana that we miss. I’ve met her family via video chat and they’re a lot like my family. It’s just a crazy comforting thing to have.
It’s also been great to be reminded what it’s like to be a shiny new volunteer. New Volunteers have so much energy and I know I came in that way too. They are open and excited and inspired while there’s a temptation to say, “just you wait…” the better reaction is to be renewed in your efforts and energy. It’s a great reminder how rare and extraordinary this experience is and of all the hard work I put in getting here. How lucky I am that 2 other countries asked me to come and work, and 2 different communities have welcomed me with open arms. It’s really refreshing and inspiring… a great note to go out on.
Also I have an awesome new friend to hang out with. My site doesn’t allow for me to go and come easily. You might wait for hours for a bus, which means meeting up for dinner or a drink with other volunteers is a no-go. There’s no easy way to go do fun things when everyone is busy and transportation so finicky. So with Lindy here we’ve come up with some exciting day trips! We’ll be going to Bath Fountains (the natural hot springs), Reggae Falls (a little waterfall nearby), we’re going to hike over to another volunteer’s place, and we’re going to climb Blue Mountain with our host family. Then maybe I can finally eat the burger at the Long Boarder and I’ll be headed out of here. Those things are only fun when you have friends to do them with and I’m happy to have Lindy to do them. It’s also a great way to start your service—getting to know some of the cute little spots here and there near your site. And I mean I can’t think of a better way to close my service than standing on the highest point of the island—fingers-crossed for clear weather.
So I am so excited to welcome PCV Lindy to Cedar Valley. She’s already getting involved and doing great things!! There’s something cool about passing on all my accumulated PCV knowledge and seeing that Cedar Valley will be someone else’s home!